The latest round of data on US housing has even more signs that the market has indeed bottomed and is travelling back up, and not just any old data but including official data from the Commerce Department.
New housing starts rose 2.6% to an annual rate of 717,000 units in April according to the latest figures from the Commerce Department; the report also revised its March figure up from an annual rate of 654,000 to 699,000.
In a separate report the Commerce Department reported a 3.3% rise in new home sales for April, to an annual rate of 343,000. Plus, March new home sales were revised upward as well. Totalling up new home sales for the last three months’ we see a growth of 14% compared to last year.
This is on top of data from the National Association of Realtors at the end of last month, showing that pending existing home sales increased by 12.8% on the year in March.
So, new home sales are rising, existing home sales look to be showing some sustained growth now as well, and builders are building more – builders are also more confident according to separate recent sentiment surveys.
But arguably the biggest signs that we are heading into the recovery proper are the fact that foreclosure filings and distressed sales are also coming down. According to the NAR distressed sales dropped to 28% of all transactions, according to the NAR. That’s down from 29% in March 2012 and 37% in April 2012. Meanwhile, RealtyTrac, which is the leading source of information on foreclosure filings, reported that foreclosure filings in the United States fell to the lowest level since 2007.
- Thursday 31 May 2012